Question:

Kelowna is one of the most expensive cities in which to live in Canada. The price of a newly built, single detached home is now more than $1.1 million. How do you propose to make Kelowna more affordable and livable?

Answer:

Council and City staff embarked upon the visioning exercise, “Vision Kelowna” which was then translated into the Growth Strategies. “Pick your Path” consultation was interactive and positive, save only that it didn’t show citizens what their choices meant to affordability, livability, and housing modes. This is still an issue. Single family housing is still the least expensive mode of housing for the citizens of Kelowna, and while we want to be leaders in sustainability, we must balance this against affordability of housing for our city. People do not understand that a home in the Upper Mission costs the same as a downtown concrete condo. While a condo may be more sustainable, it is not more livable than living in a single-family
home. We need to make sure that our missing middle has housing. Currently, that isn’t part of our plan and would help with affordability.

The best way to address affordability is to increase supply, decrease bureaucracy, wisely consult with the development and building industry to lower costs, and advocate with all levels of government to decrease the cost of new homes. Policy right now is working against these aspects of affordability, and we can make housing more affordable while increasing smart sustainability.

My role as Mayor is to facilitate good fact finding and discussion, communicate with all key parties, then collectively decide on the best solutions and lead the drive for action and result. I will lead collaboration, with the focus and determination to achieve the best for the citizens of Kelowna

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